CBS to end CSI after 15-year run on most-watched network

CSI: Crime Scene Investigation season 8. CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, will end its 15-year run on CBS in September, the network said, closing out one of the longest-running shows on TV. -- PHOTO: AXN
CSI: Crime Scene Investigation season 8. CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, will end its 15-year run on CBS in September, the network said, closing out one of the longest-running shows on TV. -- PHOTO: AXN

LOS ANGELES (Bloomberg) - CSI: Crime Scene Investigation will end its 15-year run on CBS in September, the network said, closing out one of the longest-running shows on TV.

The two-hour finale will air on Sept 27, and will include original cast members William Petersen and Marg Helgenberger, CBS said on Wednesday in a statement.

The series' importance to the network cannot be overstated. CSI, produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, was a cornerstone of the lineup, helping CBS become the most-watched American TV network for 12 of the past 13 years, and spawning spinoffs like CSI: Miami.

"This is one of the shows that helped us reverse our fortunes and turn it in the right direction," CBS executive Kelly Kahl told reporters at a breakfast in New York.

CSI is the second long-running network TV show to get the axe this week, when TV networks are in New York to pitch their 2015-2016 season lineups to advertisers. American Idol, the singing competition that once attracted more than 30 million viewers, will leave the air next year after its 15th season concludes, Fox said.

CBS has extended the CSI brand with spinoffs, including CSI: Cyber, which remains on the network's schedule.

The fourth series in the franchise, it premiered in March and stars Patricia Arquette. Ted Danson, who has been on the original CSI since 2011, joins the CSI: Cyber cast in the coming season.

The ratings for CSI and CSI: Cyber have been almost identical this season.

Both shows have averaged more than 11 million viewers and more than 2.7 million viewers between the age of 18 and 49, a key demographic for advertisers.